Tuesday, May 17, 2011


Besides the poem I wrote about my tooth, my writing time has been limited. I'm formulating a lot of ideas right now on how to revise my manuscripts, who to submit to next and what I'd like to do with my very brief pre-summer vacation. Summer class starts Monday.

I have many ideas and not much focus or energy, so I flit from idea to idea trying to find one that sticks. I have several ideas inspired by The Write Stuff and by the conference's keynote speaker agent Donald Maass. Those are for the manuscript I finished a month ago. I also have some concerns about Manipulations, the book I've been pitching, that I'd like to address. Primarily, the bad guy got tougher in book two and I think he needs to reflect that in book one.

I've resisted diving too far into Galen's back story because of the research I knew it would entail. Today I thought I'd read the passages that relate to his past and see if they spurred any idea of how I could strengthen them. I found something in this:

"A Huguenot couple had lost their daughter to a fever that their eldest son now had. They had traveled with him and his brother from the south of England. Hesper healed the boy. ... When it came time for the family to return to England, and escape the Irish climate, they offered the baby as payment. Or so Hesper had told him."

In my head I heard this voice say, "She lied."

I knew Galen's family were Huguenots from Bretagne (Brittany, the north of France). But what if the whole story was hooey? What if they fled Bretagne for some other reason? What if they left the south of England for the same reason?

I started with a quick internet search via the iPhone and discovered revolts in Bretagne, legends of Ankou, tidbits about the landscape and the language, and now I'm at the college library looking for more.

And Ankou? I haven't researched him here yet but he's Death, the Reaper. A skeleton in a shroud and flat Breton hat with an upturned scythe and an oxcart...

Sometimes with the right research, the story amazingly tumbles together as if you knew it all along.

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